Chad 25

I've got a site where users can post their goods for sale. When posting, they can choose multiple, predefined categories.

Problem I'm trying to solve here, how to present this large list of categories, in a clean, attractive and easy to use manner?

Right now, I'm using the ToCheckList jQuery plugin to make a checklist.

3 answers

Mottie 1134

Maybe the best pattern would be a format people are more familiar with like a multiselect list (I can't remember its "official name")

Another pattern to consider would be using categorized list in either a selection tree or accordion ( sorry I couldn't find any examples of this).

Answered almost 9 years ago by Mottie
  • Thank you for the links. I think, in this case, that would be more difficult that what is in place. The checklist, is easy... it just feels like there's something that can be improved, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Chad almost 9 years ago

You could organize your categories into subcategories, then use a Live Filter to allow users to drill down to the available options that they'd like to select.

One technique I've used previously (with mixed success) for an internal app was browser keyboard shortcuts on each checkbox. No clicking, just Alt-B, Alt-X.

Finally, stealing an idea from Photoshop's layer visibility options, you could use some javascript to allow users to click and scrub over their options. Click and hold on your initial option, then drag the mouse over additional options, selecting each until the mouse was released.

Answered almost 9 years ago by Fireflight
  • Very nice answer, I somewhat like the idea of the Live Filter. I'll see if I can adapt my categories into a hybrid Live Filter... Chad almost 9 years ago

I'm a fan of tagging - you could go for an interface similar to tag interfaces in various stack-engine sites (, doctpye, It's a search-as-you-type box that brings up tag options below. Easy to use, easy to store.

Answered almost 9 years ago by Dieterich Lawson
  • I've given thought to tags... I think in this case, I don't want to give an open textbox to users to let them enter tags. I really think my user base will simply want a nice selectable list of available categories. Thanks for the answer though! Chad almost 9 years ago